Art Lange’s letter to the Sounder, in which he says “reverting to council members elected county-wide is a step in the opposite direction of representative government,” overlooks the way in which Proposition 1 actually increases his representation. Mr. Lange’s remarks express as well the island-centric, or should we say district-centric, attitude encouraged by the balkanized system the present version of the charter has given us.
The present version of the charter weakens voters. It allows Mr. Lange to vote for only one sixth of the council, whereas Proposition 1 would allow him to vote for all of the council. The present version of the charter gives Mr. Lange a council of six, five of whose members have no electoral accountability to him, whereas Proposition 1 would give him a council of three, all of whose members would have electoral accountability to him. The present version of the council gives Mr. Lange one vote every four years for the council, whereas Proposition 1 would give him three votes every four years for the council.
Our little county is already fragmented by geography. We needn’t worsen its disunity by continuing with a council of six representing separate districts. We need to become one county governed by council persons who are elected county-wide.
RICHARD WARD, Lopez
RON ZEE, San Juan
STEPHEN GARRISON, Orcas